EFL Learners' Self-regulation, Critical Thinking and Language Achievement

Afsaneh Ghanizadeh, Sepideh Mirzaee


The study reflected in the present paper investigated the relationship between Iranian EFL learners' self-regulation, critical thinking ability and their language achievement. The researchers of the present study set out to investigate this association based on theoretical contention in the literature postulating a dynamic interplay between self-regulatory skills and critical thinking ability as well as empirical studies demonstrating the association of each of these constructs with academic achievement. To the researchers' best knowledge, there is hardly any documented study exploring the relationship between these constructs among EFL learners. To attain the purpose of the study, 82 EFL university learners were selected according to a convenience sampling from different universities in Mashhad, a city in the north-east of Iran. They were requested to complete the "Watson-Glaser's Critical Thinking Appraisal" and the "Self-Regulation Trait Questionnaire". They were also asked to indicate the grade point average of their previous term. The data supported the theoretical expectation of a linkage between self-regulation and critical thinking. Subsequent data analyses indicated that among the components of self-regulation, self-monitoring and self-efficacy have the highest correlations and are the positive predictors of critical thinking. In addition, the results demonstrated that EFL learners' self-regulation can predict about 53 % of their language achievement while their critical thinking ability tends to predict about 28% of achievement. The conclusions and recommendations derived from the present study should encourage educators to take advantage of these relationships by developing effective paths for developing EFL university students' self-regulation and critical thinking.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5296/ijl.v4i3.1979

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